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20.11.2009 14:53

Guardiola: "We'll come through this"

Jordi Clos

Pep Guardiola has reflected on the effects of flu and injuries on his squad this week ahead of Barça's visit to Athletic Club de Bilbao at the weekend and does not want anything used as an excuse.

Éric Abidal and Yaya Touré have both picked up the H1N1 virus and have been told that they cannot play in San Mamés this weekend, although the French defender was already ruled out with a known. "We cannot do say any more," Guardiola explained. "It could happen and it has happened. We know that many people have had it and now it has reached us and we have to ensure that it does not spread and that we can isolate it. It is always bad when things like this happen. We have some important games coming up, but we know that the other players will give everything."

No excuses

2009-11-20_ENTRENO_49.JPGZlatan Ibrahimovi suffered a thigh injury and will also not play this weekend. "I do not think it is serious but we will se how things go. I hope that next week things will improve. If he is not ready I do not want any excuses being made. Bojan [Krkic] is always ready. He is 19 years old and has a marvellous future ahead of him. His growth is a continuous process and not does not depend upon one game in Bilbao. Tomorrow [Saturday] Jonathan [Dos Santos] is in the squad and if more were needed then more youngsters would come. I have faith in the youth team."

Athletic Club

2009-11-20_ENTRENO_54.JPG"What worries me most is Athletic. San Mamés is San Mamés," he continued when asked about the atmosphere. "We have to pretend that Inter do not exist and only Athletic Club do." Barça have won their last five meetings against Los Leones, but Guardiola is paying no heed. "I see them wanting to avenge that and they have qualities I admire. The act that we have won the last few matches though means nothing and we will show them the utmost respect in this match."

Inter and Madrid

2009-11-20_ENTRENO_48.JPGNext week Barça take on Inter and then Real Madrid. "I do not give any importance to us going into the match [against Madrid] as leaders. It would be good because it would mean that we have won in Bilbao, but the league will not be decided until nearer the end of the season." Asked about Cristiano Ronaldo's participation in el Clásico the Barça coach added: "I would be delighted if he came. He is a great player and good for football."
Guardiola: “We'll come through this“

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Video evidence
On the controversy surrounding Thierry Henry's handball in the France and Ireland World Cup qualifiers in midweek Pep Guardiola defended his player: "It was evident that it was handball and I think it was instinctive. I have complete certainty that the referee did not see it. It certain situations it would not be a bad idea to use video evidence."

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